How fast is too fast: An analysis of the relationship between audio comprehension and playback speed



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A lack of research regarding audio-only comprehension has created inconsistency in what would be considered average performance in terms of comprehension. Most research has focused on coupling this with video components leading to varying results due to cueing and a lack of standardizing testing methods. Given the advent of audio-only in an educational setting through means such as lectures and podcasts, understanding how those who engage with them using tools such as playback manipulation is becoming increasingly important. This study analyzes the effect of playback speed on comprehension and attempts to find the range where comprehension decreases. Participants underwent five different assessments ranging from 1 to 2 times original playback speed in increasing increments of .25, testing their comprehension between trials. Findings suggest that prior to the speed of 1.75 times, individuals should not expect a drop off in terms of performance. This suggests advising individuals to utilize playback manipulation tools across modalities, leading to a 40% decrease in time required to listen to the material.



Playback Speed, Listen Speed, Audio Manipulation, Audio Comprehension, Speed Listening,